The Carmen Mateu Young Artist European Award, Opera and Dance was created, in conjunction with the European Festivals Association, in memory of Carmen Mateu, an important patron of the arts. The Award aims to become a prestigious cultural reference that ensures that young artists continue to gather at Peralada, as a springboard from which to begin a successful professional career.
Carmen Mateu was a major patron of poetry and the dramatic arts in Spain and the president of the Castell de Peralada Cultural Association. In 1987, alongside her husband Arturo Suqué, she founded the Castell de Peralada International Music Festival. She received numerous awards in recognition of her commitment to music and the arts over many decades, including the Medalla d’Or del Cercle del Liceu (2009), the Gran Creu de Sant Jordi, awarded by the Generalitat of Catalonia (2000), and the Gold Medal of Merit in the Fine Arts, awarded by the Spanish government’s Council of Ministers (2017). In 2011 the town council of Peralada awarded her its highest honour, the Roc d’Or, in recognition of her significant cultural and entrepreneurial contribution to the area. The work of Carmen Mateu and her husband Arturo Suqué is continued today by their children Isabel, Javier and Miguel along with the Festival’s organisational team under the direction of Oriol Aguilà.
The Carmen Mateu Young Artist European Award is awarded in one of two categories, opera and dance, in alternate years, with the winner chosen, within the category and discipline designated for that year, by the Castell de Peralada Private Foundation. Within the opera category, the award is open to individuals from the following disciplines: composer, stage designer, stage director, musical director and singer; within the dance category, the disciplines are: company director, choreographer and dancer.
This year the Award is for the opera category, specifically for the discipline of composition. The winner will receive a prize created by the artist Santi Moix in collaboration with jewellers Bagués-Masriera and a total of €30,000 to create an opera, which will be premiered at the Castell de Peralada Festival. The period for receiving nominations will end on 28 February at 23.59 GMT.
You can read more about the Award and conditions of participation here.